Once you get down in to the Southern Hemisphere, then it’s Chile which undoubtedly has the most skiing. With it comes some world-class ski resorts. There’s also a well-established ski culture. They have the best off-piste. You'll find the most dramatic mountain scenery in Chile. And then there's the wine. There you go – six good reasons to seriously re-think your summer holidays!
The ski resorts are perched up high in the Andes mountains and consequently there’s real drama involved here, from the spectacular hairpin-strewn approach roads to the awesome constant backdrop of towering peaks. In this long, thin string of a country (where distances can be mind-boggling), it’s fortunate that most of the ski resorts we feature surround the capital Santiago. Therefore, reasonably short transfer times take you to the prime powder skiing.
Having made all the effort to travel to South America, you’ll find that there is so much more to Chile than its legendary ski resorts; hot arid deserts, beautiful coastal towns, other-worldly Patagonia, a cosmopolitan and bohemian capital city with picturesque vineyards nearby. Whether it’s either only for several days or longer, we’d suggest a side of Latin culture to go with your powder turns.
The ski season in Chile takes you through four months, from mid June until mid October. However, we emphatically promote August or September as the best time to travel due to the near-perfect snow conditions, blue skies and quieter slopes. July can be tricky because of the Chilean, Argentinean and (most notably) Brazilian national holidays; super-high prices, slopes packed with (poor) skiers and precious little availability at the hotels. The early season in June is when ‘special deals’ are commonplace and snow conditions are usually reasonable, although you should expect low temperatures and frequent snowfalls.
There are over 20 notable ski resorts, most located in the central or southern half of the country - the north is largely given over to desert. The Andes Mountains, which rise to create the border between Chile and Argentina are the reason you are here and, without any need for hyperbole, create extraordinarily impressive scenery.
We tend to focus on the larger fully-fledged resorts in the central zone of Chile, where you’ll enjoy ease of access from Santiago, varied terrain and better accommodation. There’s certainly adventure to be had in the south of the country, but the resorts are all on a smaller scale and you’ll find the facilities often lacking. We also feature Arpa, which has no lifts or no pistes. Instead it offers the best snowcat skiing and boarding in South America. We can also arrange heli-skiing trips, deep in to the Andes mountains.
Tap on the resorts below to find out more:
Chile’s northernmost ski resort is also South America's oldest and most well-known. Everyone must ski here at least once in their life! The terrain can be steep, the off-piste endless, and the powder can last for days.
About five hours south of Santiago, Nevados de Chillán is a hot springs resort which spreads over two active volcanoes. Snow is bountiful, with the fun terrain comes complete with steam rising from the thermal springs.
Wherever you are coming from the capital Santiago will be your entry and exit city. It's a long flight from the UK, likely to take you between 17-20 hours. The journey usually involves a short hop over to Europe – Madrid, Paris or Amsterdam– and then a long-haul leg over the Atlantic. From the USA and Canada the journey is more bearable, further helped by remaining in similar time zones. From Australia and New Zealand there are direct services to Santiago that are very convenient.
Once you are in Chile the ski resorts we feature are all easily accessible from Santiago. Therefore, once you’ve endured the long international flight, it’s all gravy.
Different Snow are a fully licensed and financially bonded tour operator - we can your organise international flights to Chile. Often we have access to better fares than what would be available directly to you - at the very least, as good as. For your piece of mind, it's better to keep it all your travel arrangements under one roof. Therefore, if one element fails for whatever reason, it's then our responsibility to get things back on track.